Unique Landscape: Hilary Hahn and Hauschka's 'Silfra'

May 23, 2012, 2:46 PM · Hilary Hahn's new album, Silfra, is like nothing you've ever heard from Hilary Hahn.

She has teamed up with prepared-piano master and innovator Volker Bertelmann ("Hauschka"), to create an album of improvised, minimalist-sounding music inspired by the unique landscape of the Silfra rift in Iceland. The official release of the album is tomorrow.

Photo © Mareike Foecking

The interview below includes some footage from Iceland and also illustrates the wackiness of prepared piano (ping-pong balls!) and these two artists' working process:

They also enlisted Brooklyn-based animator Hayley Morris to create a video for a piece from the album called "Bounce Bounce":

Hilary also has been taking questions from people about the album on her Facebook page and will keep answering through Friday, if you want to submit a question to her. Here are some of the questions and answers:

Question from Lester: How do the different timbres of the prepared piano affect how you improvise, how do you react to the sounds, and vice-versa?



Question from Adam: Have you ever considered putting a fork in your violin?


Here is a website they set up about 'Silfra'. What a feast of creativity!


May 23, 2012 at 11:38 PM · Laurie, have you seen my review? CD Review: Hilary Hahn & Hauschka, Silfra

May 24, 2012 at 07:55 PM · I love seeing this side of Ms. Hahn's creativity. I think the sea creatures video is pure genius. Amazing animation and visual art as well!

May 26, 2012 at 12:35 AM · I like this because after having done this, she's probably going to go back to the tired old classics, and those won't feel like such tired or old classics anymore. This happened when she went from Schoenberg to the Sibelius.

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Discover the best of Violinist.com in these collections of editor Laurie Niles' exclusive interviews.

Violinist.com Interviews Volume 1
Violinist.com Interviews Volume 1, with introduction by Hilary Hahn

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Violinist.com Interviews Volume 2, with introduction by Rachel Barton Pine